induction range dilemma

NewEnglandSaraMay 4, 2014

Hi there,

We are in the early stages of a renovation, but we need to pick our kitchen appliances in the next few days so that our cabinet design can be finalized. We know that we want to get a 30 inch induction range, but we are puzzled about how to decide between two options. We would love input!

1) We are getting Whirlpool or Kitchen Aid for our fridge and dishwasher, and Whirlpool seems to be the only company (aside from Maytag) that makes an induction range with a double oven. We like the price and the fact that we could have the option of a double oven when we need to cook multiple items. On the negative side, my husband doesn't love the look of the range or the lay-out of the cooktop. Here is a link to it:

2) Bosch makes a slide-in, single induction range that looks beautiful. We know that Bosch is known for making great ovens, and my husband likes the look of this range. On the negative side, it only has one oven; and it is at least $1000 (probably a bit more) pricier than the Whirlpool model.

Any thoughts about how to make this decision? Have you experienced either model? Can you think of pros or cons to these brands or types of ranges? We could use some input.

Thanks so much!


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Personally, the amount of time spent at the stovetop will probably vastly exceed the amount of times you use a double oven, so I'd want to get the things I like most to have as few compromises as possible.

    Bookmark   May 4, 2014 at 10:15PM
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AKAIK, the Bosch Benchmark Slide-in Induction Range (Model HIIP054U) only just started shipping to dealers a couple of weeks ago. I think it was dancingqueen who just ordered one and has promised a review but won't receive it for another week or two.

As for the Whirlpool twin oven induction range, have you seen the thread I've linked below?

Here is a link that might be useful: New Whirlpool induction range

    Bookmark   May 5, 2014 at 4:51AM
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Thanks for the input so far! JWVideo, that link was super helpful. Now I am worried about fan noise and clicking noise. That said, it is stressful that the Bosch range doesn't have reviews yet! If you are familiar with ranges in general, does Bosch tend to be one of the more reliable brands? Are there other brands that are preferred? I thought GE Profile tended to be good for ovens, ranges and cooktops, but our local (and highly regarded) appliance store told me that they stopped carrying GE due to reliability issues. I wasn't sure if this was related to GE's other appliances or their ranges as well.

Thanks again!


    Bookmark   May 5, 2014 at 9:15AM
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When it comes to stoves, cooktops and wall ovens GE has been among the most reliable appliance brands according the the annual membership surveys compiled by Consumer Reports. GE had some issues with dishwashers, but reliability has been improving. It was refrigerators where the company had (and contiues to have) a reputation for poor quality control and warranty service failings. For severa years, GE outsourced all of its refrigerator production and those had a truly abysmal defect rate (close to one in four needing service in the first five years of ownership). GE has "onshored" production of some fridges to its Kentucky plant and those, apparently, are more durable and reliable. The GE stoves have been a completely different story of class leading reliability and longevity. CR's membership experience for over a decade now have been showing the GE and Hotpoint electric ranges to have been the most reliable and among the best performing (at least by CR's lights.) .

I really don't know where to find hard data on the Bosch electric ranges. Not enough CR members purchased Bosch electric ranges to generate what CR regarded as a statistically significant sample, so Bosch stoves didn't get listed in the survey reports. A couple of friends have had Bosch dual fuel ranges for five and six years without problems, but that's hardly data of any scope. You might check out the complaints on and look for patterns. (IIRC, most f the complaints will be about washing machines and dishwashers with relatively few about the ranges.) BSH is a big company, and all big companies will generate some hundreds of complaints.

The new Bosch Benchmark Induction Range has an interesting burner layout that may work well for some and not for others. It has touchpad controls on the cooktop surface which some like and others do not. I'm personally prejudiced against cooktop touchpads because of some bad experiences with cooking spills on older induction ranges with cooktop controls a decade or so ago. For me, there is also potential control issues that can turn up if you pull hot pans out of the oven and place them on your cooktop over the control panel. Other folks do not have this problem and they swear by the cooktop touchpad controls. It is really a YMMV thing.

The Bosch has some very nice features including individual timers for the each of the burners. (AFAIK, it is the only induction range that offers this in the North American market). The oven may be a mite too small for some folks. If you regularly use two half sheet pans on a rack, I'd want to check it out it person to make sure that the convection fan housing doesn't impede this.

BSH has been making induction appliances in Europe for decades now and some of the divisions (Gagenau) apparently have a good reputation for reliability but I have yet to find an solid data comparable to the CR membership surveys. (The data may well be out there for Europe or Australia, and I just have not found it yet. Maybe somebody else has?)

If you like using a rectangular griddle(for pancakes, tortillas, etc.), check the Bosch owner's manual as they might prohibit burner spanning on this particular model. (IIRC, the new Benchmark induction cooktops are specifically set-up for this but the new Benchmark range is not.) If burner spanning is of interest, both the GE freestanding induction range (PHB920) and the slide-in (PHS920) permit spanning but you have to control each burner separately.

If you can't lay hands on an actual Benchmark in a store, I'd suggest printing out a top view of the cooktop and then make a full scale drawing of the burner sizes and layout on a piece of newspaper. Pull out your pans and see how they fit onto the burner circles. To me, the Bosch layout would be preferable to the Whirlpool/Maytag induction range layout, but still would be problematic for the kind of entertaining and projects I do. (I often use three or four largish pans, but not everybody does or cares about this so YMMV.)

One final thought: If you wind up having to choose a single oven induction range, then consider adding second oven capability with a countertop oven with either the Breville 800 Smart Oven (around $250) or the Cuisinart CSO-300 countertop combi-steam oven (around $300). Each seems to have a fairly devoted and impressed following as reflected in several threads here and at Chowhound. Although the countertop units eat some counter space (like toaster ovens), both seem very capable small units. One of them might be a workable alternative to the twin oven capacity you were looking at.

This post was edited by JWVideo on Mon, May 5, 14 at 17:59

    Bookmark   May 5, 2014 at 5:46PM
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